Is it hard to imagine putting away a head of cauliflower in one sitting? Many hounds say they could easily do just that if the cauliflower is roasted. "I've been roasting cauliflower for years," says lawmann, "and have made quite a few converts—people who never liked cauliflower until they tasted it done this way." And chowser says, "It's one vegetable my kids fight over."
The basic technique: Toss cauliflower florets with olive oil and salt, spread on a sheet pan, and roast at 425°F until tender and browned, about 25 minutes, turning once about halfway through. "Give a taste when they start looking pretty," advises eight_inch_pestle. QueenB Prefers to slice the head of cauliflower into 1/4- to 1/2-inch-thick slices because "you get more surface in contact with your pan, which gives more browning and flavor." Hounds recommend drying cauliflower well after washing for best results, and some let it drain and dry overnight in the fridge before roasting.
Cauliflower roasted with nothing but oil and salt is delicious, but "it's great with different spices and condiments—from curry to Dijon mustard to cumin," says chowser. BigSal is a fan of CHOW's Pepper-Roasted Cauliflower, which is seasoned with soy sauce. Others add a squeeze of lemon or some balsamic vinegar before roasting, or sprinkle with grated Parmesan when it comes out of the oven.
smtucker mashes roasted cauliflower into a purée. "Wonderful substitute for mashed potatoes under braised lamb shanks or duck legs," she says. "The braising juices coat the mash and it is delicious."
Discuss: OMG—Roasted Cauliflower